How do you relax your body to reduce stress?

In this video I share the two main techniques I use to relax my body and reduce stress:  take a body scan to identify tense muscles, then stretch them out.

Are you aware of how stress shows up physically?  For me it’s neck/shoulder and lower back tension.  When I’m nervous I feel tension in my stomach.  Other people experience headaches, increased heart rate or blood pressure.  Knowing where that stress shows up makes it easier to release.  And it’s so important to release that tension – to avoid pain, illness and discomfort.

Stress doesn’t have to get the best of you and sometimes a simple stretch is all you need to feel good.  Check out some of the videos in my Stretch Break! series to get you going. A new one will be posted on Wednesday.

How do you relax your body to reduce stress? (keep it healthy, please!) I hope you’ll share with us, so we can all learn from one another and feel better during and at the end of our day.

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  • Peggy

    Like most people, my stress and tension will show up in my neck and shoulders – specifically the right side.

    Usually a very good sign that I need a date with my yoga mat but if it builds up at work because I’m on the computer, Eagle Arms is my favorite shoulder opener and cow face pose (just the arms) to open up space in my chest while getting a good stretch for my shoulders.


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  • Chris Edgar

    Hi Stacey — yes, I’ve definitely found scanning my awareness over my body regularly during the day to be a great way to release tension and also to bring my awareness back to the project in front of me in case it’s drifting.

  • Karl Staib – Work Happy Now

    Scanning the body is a great way to understand where we hold our stress. I hold a lot of stress in my legs, neck, and back. Whenever I get tense in my upper back I know that I need to make time to relax. It’s a great trigger as long as I pay attention to it.

    Thanks Stacey! I feel a little stressed right now before my big launch. I think I’ll do a little stretching.

  • Keith Davis

    Hi Stacey
    Deep breathing… works for me every time.
    I blog on Public Speaking and I’m a big believer in deep breathing whilst you’re waiting to be announced.
    Slows everything down and gives you something to concentrate on.

    Also allows you to feel your stomach rise and fall and stops any shallow breathing.

    Love the website Stacey and the videos are super.

    • Stacey Shipman

      Hi Keith, Thanks for stopping by and commenting. I teach public speaking as well and I always teach breathing as a stress management technique. It really does work, doesn’t it? Thanks again for your kind thoughts.

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